Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Renovation project - Driving across the Pyrenees

Renovation project  - Driving across the Pyrenees 

We have had a fantastic day and night in Laruns and Artouste and today we had planned to go to Lourdes, not because we are really religious but because it is a place I have always wanted to visit since being at school. There is a similar place in Wales, UK, called Holywell and the feeling of calm is fabulous whatever your religious persuasion.

Unfortunately we have been informed by other people staying at the hotel that due to the floods Lourdes had to be evacuated, this leaves us in a bit of a dilemma as we have another night in the hotel and now do not have any where to visit, as lovely as the Pyrenees are, we really do need some real sunshine. Luckily the hotel owner allows us to cut our visit short without financial penalty and we decide to drive to Montserrat, near Barcelona. This will mean driving across the entire Pyrenees from the Atlantic side to the Mediterranean. Normally we would love this but with the weather it is a little bit worrying, but we have the trusty Volvo!!!!

The drive is amazing and we drive up steep mountain roads and pass some amazing landscape, the snow capped mountains make you realise just how small and insignificant you really are!

As we are driving along we pass a shepherd with a flock of sheep just wandering across the road, it is a 
fantastic sight and the sound of all the bells is so funny, we have no idea where they are going and a few stop to look at us and probably wonder the same thing!

The properties are from a chocolate box scene and very reminiscent of Swiss chalets, we go through many ski resorts and I am now feeling very tempted to actually go on a ski holiday with my daughter, she has been asking me for years but I always refuse, but as I said I am feeling tempted, the idea of seeing the mountains covered in snow and staying in a chocolate box chalet is nice, but maybe I am being a bit romantic and however trusty the Volvo is I don’t think I would want to trust it in deep snow!

The temperature is steadily rising and we have no problems with the weather, we hope we have left the floods behind.

As we are driving we know that we will be entering Spain soon and wonder what the customs check point will be like, after all the customs are getting more and more secure everywhere. Well we pass it and it is a small shed with graffiti on it and nobody anywhere in sight, quite different to passing airport security or the 

Because of the bad weather John had wanted to travel on the toll roads, I did try to explain that it probably wouldn’t make any difference in the mountains as I was sure that they would not build big motorways across them! They didn’t and the journey was lovely, we removed the toll roads from the sat nav once we left the mountains and the drive was fantastic, it is quite amazing that you can pass from the Atlantic ocean to the Mediterranean ocean, form one side of a mountain range to the other and cover two countries in one day, but you can, I don’t think we ever want to fly anywhere again.

The only real problem we have and this is a warning for anybody driving far, the sat nav did not like the directions given by the hotel, it appears in France and in Spain that many directions consist of exit such and such from a motorway, our sat nav will only accept a town and street name, this caused some real problems trying to find the hotel and because we do not have mobile internet we could not e-mail for better directions.
So our big tip if you are going to do a long journey is to check the sat nav you have and how it finds places. (We bought a new all singing all dancing sat nav recently, and it is not as good as our old one!!!!!!)

We arrive at the hotel and realise that it had changed name recently, which maybe didn’t help with us trying to find it! But wow!!!!! It is amazing, the reception is spacious, the rooms are lovely, there is a big pool and terrace area which overlooks Montserrat and the breakfast (I know this is the day after but I couldn’t not tell you) was a banquet, there was enough food to feed an army and everything you could possibly imagine from sausage and eggs through to cakes!!!!!

This is one of our luxury stays for the holiday but we found the hotel on Trivago and it only cost £50 per night or £51 per night with breakfast!!!!!!!!!

A trip like this one can cost a fortune or can be very reasonable if you research hotels before hand; I am not paid to advertise Trivago, but would recommend the site to everyone.

No comments:

Post a Comment